Nov
03


Show of Hands Plays The Best Halloween Song I Have Ever Heard from Michal Shapiro on Vimeo.

“Go light the lantern at your door
And honor those who’ve gone before
The worlds that part us now are twain
For Hallow’s Eve is here again.”

A few weeks ago I had the great pleasure of attending the English Folk Expo or EFEx. (And I’ll be posting a LOT about EFEx and the artists later!)

Although I love English folk music, I had never heard of a single artist that performed during those three intensive days. The level of musicianship was amazingly high, and certainly one of the most memorable performances was by the knockout power trio Show of Hands, who packed the spacious Drill Hall in the Castle Armory. This song immediately struck me as one I wanted to share right away as Halloween approaches. It’s called “Hallow’s Eve” and was written by Chris Hoban, a music teacher and friend of the band from their hometown of Topsham in Devon.

It describes a holiday that is a far cry from the Halloween we now “celebrate.” I have no problem with children dressing up and going door to door asking for sweets. I do have misgivings about forgetting the true, older spirit of the holiday, which is much closer to the Day of the Dead; in which the souls of our forebears are able to communicate with us, and we with them.

As this song states it is a time of both joy and reflection, as the fruits of harvest are gathered in, we await the harshness of winter, and we contemplate the cycles of the seasons and our lives.

So when you place that candle in your Jack o’ Lantern this year, maybe think of it as more than just a smiley-face carved in a pumpkin. Take a moment and “honor those who’ve gone before.”

For more information about Show of Hands visit: showofhands.co.uk/
For more information about the EFEx visit: englishfolkexpo.com/
The EFEx is produced in partnership with the Met Arts Center in Bury, Manchester UK: http://themet.biz



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Michal
Welcome!

Here’s where you’ll find my weekly original world music video blogs that appear on Huffington Post, as well as an archive starting in April of 2009.

This is also the place where you will find video that is exclusive to my site. I’ve traveled to places like Uzbekistan, Morocco, and Taiwan and no matter where I go I have found amazingly talented and creative people working in every genre from the deepest traditions to the cutting edge.

It’s been incredibly rewarding to interview them and to capture some of what they do on video. Enjoy what you see and hear, and let me know what you think. I welcome your feedback.

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